Intel has stated that it will invest US$20 billion in a new chip factory in Ohio, as part of a drive to enhance domestic production of computer chips in order to address a continuing shortfall of these components. According to a press statement from the corporation, the new location near Columbus would initially include two chip manufacturers and would directly employ 3,000 people, while also producing 7,000 short-term construction employment and tens of thousands of permanent roles at suppliers and partners. Intel’s decision has far-reaching geopolitical ramifications, as well as concerns for supply networks.
Background on the Intel Ohio chip factory and global shortage
Chips, which serve as the brains of computers and many other gadgets, are mostly made in Taiwan, which China claims is its own. During the pandemic, they were also in low supply due to oversupply and coronavirus-related interruptions in manufacturing and labor supply, prompting concerns about how to maintain a continuous chip pipeline. President Biden, who championed the law, stated that the CHIPS Act and U.S. investments by Intel and other chipmakers were critical to the economy, national security, and economic rivalry.
Patrick Gelsinger stated that Intel wanted to invest up to US$100 billion over a decade to create up to eight plants on the Ohio site, with the breadth and speed of that growth tied to projected federal funding if Congress approved the CHIPS Act. The location picked for the new facility, New Albany, a suburb east of Columbus, is recognized for its low-cost land and housing. Nearby Ohio State University is a big source of engineering graduates from which Intel may hire. Columbus is also well positioned for receiving materials as well as transporting completed chips.